A 99-year-old grandmother has put her hat into the ring to become her town’s next mayoress by standing as a candidate in the Madrid region’s municipal elections next month.
Maria del Rosario – known as Charito to her fans – aims to beat her modern rivals at the local elections set for 28th May with a dose of granny good sense and promises like free dentures for OAPs.
Maria – who is standing for office in Patones, a small village famous for its local gastronomy and surrounded by olive groves in the Madrid Sierra- believes only women can truly put their backs into a job.
But the Town Hall hopeful – representing her self-created Grandmas For Patones party – does not believe in modern methods like door-to-door campaigning.
She told local media: “Do you think that at my age I am going to go around town in a car with a megaphone?”
Instead, she declared: “I’m going to eat a piece of cake every day to give me energy, I want to be the new mayoress of the town.”
Gran of six, Maria’s party gets most of its support from women of a certain age.
Their slogan ‘Two Breasts Pull More Than Two Wagons’, is a play on a Spanish saying meaning women can get more things done more quickly.
One of her most urgent targets, she said, is to build a large car park as the town – often visited by numerous tourists – desperately needs one.
Maria believes that by charging visitors small parking fees, she will get the costs back in no time, and even earn more money for other projects.
She also wants the power cables hanging from the town’s lampposts to be put underground so the streets look nice and clean.
And, if there is any money left over, she also promises to provide new dentures for all the residents who need them.
The other members of ‘Grandmas For Patones’ highlight Maria’s good humour and say she is full of life.
One friend, known as ‘Yoyes’, says that this party is made up of “21st-century women” who will “do everything possible so that Patones does not sink.”
The women formed their party a few years ago, after growing tired of being continuously dismissed by the current mayor.
Maria said: “He is never willing to open the door for us; we didn’t know how to do it. We wanted the town to pay attention to us.”